Skip to main content
×
Home

Design, Inference, and the Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism

  • SCOTT ASHWORTH (a1), JOSHUA D. CLINTON (a1), ADAM MEIROWITZ (a1) and KRISTOPHER W. RAMSAY (a1)
Abstract

In “The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism,” Robert Pape (2003) presents an analysis of his suicide terrorism data. He uses the data to draw inferences about how territorial occupation and religious extremism affect the decision of terrorist groups to use suicide tactics. We show that the data are incapable of supporting Pape's conclusions because he “samples on the dependent variable.”—The data only contain cases in which suicide terror is used. We construct bounds (Manski, 1995) on the quantities relevant to Pape's hypotheses and show exactly how little can be learned about the relevant statistical associations from the data produced by Pape's research design.

Copyright
Corresponding author
Scott Ashworth is Assistant Professor of Politics, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08544 (sashwort@princeton.edu).
Joshua D. Clinton is Assistant Professor of Politics, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08544 (clinton@princeton.edu).
Adam Meirowitz is Associate Professor of Politics, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08544 (ameirowi@princeton.edu).
Kristopher W. Ramsay is Assistant Professor of Politics, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08544 (kramsay@princeton.edu).
References
Hide All
Berman Eli, Euben Roxanne L., Kepel Gilles, Laitin David, Rasler Karen, and Shapiro Ian. 2007. “Understanding Suicide Terror.” Perspectives on Politics 5 (March): 117–40.
Bloom Mia. 2005. Dying to Kill: Allure of Suicide Terror. New York: Columbia University Press.
Geddes Barbara. 1990. “How the Cases You Choose Affect the Answers You Get: Selection Bias in Comparative Politics.” Political Analysis 2 (Spring): 131–50.
King Gary, and Lenche Zeng. 2001a. “Explaining Rare Events in International Relations.” International Organization 55 (Summer): 693715.
King Gary, and Lengche Zeng. 2001. “Logistic Regression in Rare Events Data.” Political Analysis 9 (Spring): 137–63.
King Gary, and Lengche Zeng. 2002. “Estimating Risk and Rate Levels, Ratios and Differences in Case-control Studies.” Statistics in Medicine 21 (August): 1409–27.
King Gary, Keohane Robert O., and Verba Sidney. 1994. Designing Social Inquiry: Scientific Inference in Qualitative Research. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
Manski Charles F. 1995. Identification Problems in the Social Sciences. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Murphy Caryle. 2005. “A Scholarly Look at Terror Sees Bootprints in the Sand.” The Washington Post 41: D01.
Pape Robert A. 2003. “The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism.” American Political Science Review 97 (August): 343–61.
Pape Robert A. 2005. Dying to Win: The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism. New York: Random House.
Sageman Marc. 2004. Understanding Terror Networks. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.
Shively W. Phillips. 2005. The Craft of Political Research. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

American Political Science Review
  • ISSN: 0003-0554
  • EISSN: 1537-5943
  • URL: /core/journals/american-political-science-review
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 18
Total number of PDF views: 245 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 701 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 19th November 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.